Archive for November, 2011

Ogden Art Group Meeting – Neat Tube Turning Technique

November 22, 2011

I’m back from spending a week of luxury in my daughter’s and SIL’s  home dogsitting.  She has a ranch home and it’s much easier for me and my knees living in a home with all the rooms on one floor.  Plus, she lives close to all sorts of stores, so instead of it taking me 30 minutes to get someplace, I arrive in 5.  What a time saver.  There is no place like home though, and I’m very happy to be sleeping in my own bed. 

I forgot to take photos of a neat technique I learned at last month’s art group meeting, so tried it out again this morning and took photos this time.  It’s an easy way of turning any size fabric tubes you’d like to make – courtesy of Norma’s demo.

Fold your fabric right sides together, and sew a 1/4″ seam – or smaller if you’d like – along the cut edge.  Then go down about a 1/4 of an inch from the top of your sewn tube, and clip a little V shape into the folded edge:


Insert a bobby pin – remember those?  Would you believe I still have a full bag of old school hair rollers with bobby pins in them in my house?  But back to the instructions.  The little bit of fabric at the top is caught in the bobby pin and the bobby pin is slipped inside the tube:

Now you start pushing the bobby pin through the tube, gathering the fabric and slipping it over the bobby pin:

That part was difficult for me when Norma first showed it to me.  I could not get the darn thing started.  At home, I realized I needed to gently start it by making sure the fabric was turned and starting to go inside the tube.  

Voila!!! A nicely turned fabric tube:


I hope you like this technique.  You can make any size fabric tube you’d like, and it saves you the money of having to buy a tube turning gadget. 



GVQC November 2011 meeting

November 11, 2011

Yesterday was GVQC’s monthly meeting and we were honored to have Jane Holihan give us a trunk show of her drop dead, absolutely gorgeous quilts.  Jane is an award winning quilt artist – and we’re talking the biggest awards around for quilt making – and we were all impressed by her, her work, and her modesty.  Instead of accepting her lecture fee, she had the money donated to the School of the Holy Childhood.  

My photographs do not do justice to her work.  I’ll post the pictures in order of her making them – I hope I remember that correctly – and then will make a few comments after you’ve seen all the photos. 

And the show begins:

Jane hand quilts all her quilts, and the last 2 pictures are minatures ranging  from 14″ squares to the much smaller whole cloth quilt at the end.  That could not have been larger than 8-10″ x 12-14″.

And a big thank-you to Marcia for holding up the minatures for me so I could take better photos.   As usual, if you double click on the photos, they will enlarge for you.

I’ve been a member of GVQC for over 30 years, and I can count the number of times we’ve given a speaker a standing ovation.  Jane received a standing ovation.  Brava, Jane!!! 


Sewing Sample

November 9, 2011

Oh my gosh, I’m in love with my new sewing machine – the fabulous Pfaff Creative Sensation – AKA Esther, and am really putting it through its paces.  So far, I haven’t found a thread this machine does not like. 

Case in point:

Can you believe how nicely that stitched out?  It’s a candlewicking design sewn with Sulky Holoshimmer.  I kid you not – Sulky Holoshimmer – a thread that shreds if you look at it sideways.   Esther took it in stride, and happily sewed away – at full speed mind you.  The bobbin thread stayed on the bottom, the stitching proceeding flawlessly, and I am in awe of this new sewing machine.

The two red lines above and below the candlewicking design were done on an Elna Pro 905 serger and is a coverstitch.  That machine has moved onto a new home, and I hope it’s behaving nicely for its new owner. 

I’m so glad I saved this little sample though, because this color combination is wonderful.  I can see a black jacket in my future with splashes of red and copper. 


A New Present for Myself

November 8, 2011

It’s Happy Days Are Here Again time here.  My Pfaff Creative Vision was traded in for the new Pfaff Creative Sensation yesterday.  If my knees were better, I’d be doing a happy dance all over my sewing studio.  Heck, I’d be doing a happy dance all over the entire house.  LOL

The feed dogs on this machine are perfect, and that was the major reason I traded in my sewing machine.  The stacking stitches are also a big plus, but that could easily be accomplished in a hoop and using software.  I don’t have to use any of that for these built-in designs though.  They sew out like a dream.

My new machine is going to be named too.  She’s Esther – in honor of a dear friend of mine who was an excellent tailor.  I hope she’s looking down from heaven, and smiling big time that she is always in my thoughts and prayers.   It’ll also stop me from swearing at the machine when “operator error” occurs.  I could never swear at the real Esther, so I won’t swear after her namesake. 

Before I traded in my Creative Vision, I sewed out a design that was in that machine, but not included in the new machine:

I’m going to miss having that built-in embroidery design on my machine, but isn’t it interesting to see the differences between the 2 embroideries?  The light exposure was exactly the same when I took the photographs for both those embroideries, and the fabric on the left is muslin, while the other is some of my hand dyed fabric. 

You wouldn’t think such a slight thread color change could make such a difference, but it sure does.  All the threads were 100% cotton, and I wish I had thought of sewing one out in rayon before I traded in my machine.  The rayon one would have really glowed. 

Actually, the fabric background contributed to the different results too.  When you place a lighter color against a darker background – as in the white thread with my darker hand dyed fabric – that creates more contrast, and the lighter color comes forward in the design more.  The cream thread and the muslin blended too much for high contrast, but it’s a nice example of a design that blends well with the fabric, so both embroideries will be used  – for different effects.

I also used a darker grey for the nose shading, and a lighter color for the eye in the white example. 

Today I’ll be spending some quality time with Esther, then head to the Y, and then vote.  I haven’t missed voting in one single solitary election since I turned 18, and I’m not about to start now. 


RAFA Meeting – November 2011 Part II

November 7, 2011

Now for the rest of RAFA’s Show and Tell. 

Beth finished quilting her first art quilt:

You’d never know she is a beginning quilter.  I really like her color choices.

Caren ice dyed a t-shirt:

First off, she’s a lovely person – inside and out – but can you see what look like trees emerging from the bottom edge?  I love how that t-shirt came out.

Elaine enjoys photo manipulation on her computer and didn’t disappoint today:

That is a photo of her daughters that she printed out on fabric in a monochromatic style.  What a great idea!!!

Janet goes on vacation with her family to the mountains every year, and she made quilts for each family as a rembrance:

There is actual tree bark sewn onto those pieces.  They are fragile, but what wonderful keepsakes.

Judy was home from her travels and shared her newest piece with us:

The more I look at the piece, the more interpretations I envision.  It makes me keep on wanting to look at it.   Now I’m a type A personality and tend to breeze through quilt shows, so something that captures my interest is rare.  If I’m intrigued, everyone who takes the time to appreciate and really look at each quilt will be glued in place. 

Kate brought her Scotties piece just to prove she quilts 😉 :

Liz made another jacket using vintage linens:

She wore it when she went to an antique store recently and got roundly criticized by a vendor for cutting up a vintage tablecloth to make that jacket.  Part of me wants to keep everything pristine, but then the other part of me thinks it should be used, and let’s face it, more tablecloths get damaged when they are used as tablecloths, than when they are made into a wearable object. 

Pat came for a short visit – it was so nice to see you again, Pat – and she showed her finished butterfly quilt:

I saw this piece in multiple stages and it is absolutely gorgeous.  The amount of detail she puts into her pieces is amazing and this piece is no exception.

Last but not least is Sharon. This piece was started in an Esterita Austin workshop and I loved it:

It has lots of sheer layers and bits of glitz added here and there.   I love the colors and could see that hanging in my house.

This piece was started in a Velda Newman class:

I’m impressed that Sharon actually finishes the pieces she starts in workshops.   No way would I share just how many workshop pieces I have half completed in my studio.  I’m saving everyone from getting heart palpitations.  😉


RAFA November 2011 Meeting

November 6, 2011

It’s been a busy, productive week for me.  My sewing machine has been put to good use embroidering tigers, leaves and flowers, and I attended RAFA’s monthly meeting.  Show and tell was wonderful.  In fact, I took so many pictures, it will take two posts to show them all. 

Quite a few members had attended a class taught by Elin Noble, and today’s post will focus on the lovely fabrics from that class.

Anne created this gorgeous piece using chopsticks as the resist:


Barb also used chopsticks in this piece:


These next two are also Barb’;s pieces and she overdyed them – I think once:

Val’s piece was also overdyed – more than once:

Her pieces looked so rich in person.  Personally, I like the look of overdying, and don’t you think the more times the fabric hits the dyepot, the more interesting the piece becomes?    Sometimes the fabric was reclamped and dyed, and sometimes it was just tossed into another dye bath.  You do have to be careful with color choice though, or you can end up with muddy looking fabric. 

Donna also attended the class, and her fabric was wonderful too, but she was moving so fast, I wasn’t able to get any pictures.  She had one piece that was made by clamping CD discs to the fabric, and we all burst out laughing as it looked like a very strange mammogram image.  Trust me, that little hole in the middle of the CD made for some very off center you know whats, and then to add to the wonkiness, imagine it mirror imaged and reflected.  LOL